Starting seeds in DE

Richland, WA(Zone 7b)

I am feeling really dumb today- I have been following a thread about seed starting in DE, and have posted several times. Now when I want to post to it I can't find it.I have tried to find a history of my posts but no luck.
Anyway, I want to post this- it's not veggie related but I am sowing some Saponaria seeds. I have several plants around my yard and have discovered that they don't divide well since they have a single taproot. Last year I tried rooting cuttings with no success, so seeds are the only way I know.
Here are photos of the DE in a 32 cell flat (I cut circles of coffee filters to plug the holes) the 3rd one shows how fast the water wicks up. The seeds need light to germinate so I will just sprinkle them on after the surface is wet enough.
Off topic, but I posted a question 3 days ago to the Morning Glory forum and haven't had any response. I have some MGs that are getting very tall- about 3" from soil to 1st leaves. They have been in and out for several weeks now and it is still too cold to plant them outside. Will they be OK if I bury the bare stems or will they rot! They are strong but just tall. Thanks--

Thumbnail by JoParrott Thumbnail by JoParrott Thumbnail by JoParrott
Florissant, MO

Hi Jo,

That looks interesting, I'll have to give that DE (Diatomaceous Earth) a try sometime.

I've never grown Morning Glories so can't help with your question regarding them. I can however help with your lost thread :-) I think you're looking for this one (url below).


Ottawa, KS(Zone 5b)

Hi Jo,

At first I thought you were talking about starting seeds in Delaware. There are some precautions relative to diatomaceous earth, particularly the non-food-grade.

In particular, notice that down on that page it says,

"IMPORTANT NOTES: Industrial grade diatomaceous earth, which has larger quantities of a highly crystallized form of silica, should never be inhaled due to possible health risks for the lungs. When using food grade diatomaceous earth externally, such as in the garden or on pets, it is probably a good idea to wear a dust mask and gloves. Breathing in too much food grade diatomaceous earth may irritate the mucus membranes in the nose and mouth and it may dry out your skin. Once the dust settles, it does not pose a threat. Diatomaceous earth can also dry out your skin."

If you are using non-food-grade diatomaceous earth, you should be particularly careful not to breath in any of the dust from it. Those sharp little points would not be good for your lungs and tracheal and bronchial tubes.


Richland, WA(Zone 7b)

ZenMan, yes, I am familiar with all the precautions re: De. I have been involved in a lenfthy thread regarding an extensive project being done by a grower. on the website. There are many people who are having great seed germination with DE.

Richland, WA(Zone 7b) here's the Tomatoville link if anyone is interested-

Florissant, MO

Thanks Zen_Man,

Think I'll just forget about DE !


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